Art you can carry

Fino unveils a 30-piece collection featuring the works of artist Kara Pangilinan and Filipino motifs.  

Since its founding back in 1992, Fino Leatherware has always grounded its brand philosophy to Filipino artistry, focusing on the craftsmen and creatives who’ve conceptualized its collections.

Fino Leatherware’s new collection will be available at Rockwell end of September. Photos by Jo Ann Bitagcol, modeled by Bella Ysmael

Its most recent campaign pays tribute to Filipino culture through its first collaborative artist-led project, Art You Can Carry, featuring the works of Kara Pangilinan. Pangilinan started to explore art while still a student of architecture at the University of the Philippines. After earning her degree, she worked in an architectural firm for a few months before deciding on becoming a full time artist.

Artist Kara Pangilinan’s designs for Fino’s collection were inspired by Filipino motifs such as flowers, vinta and sipa.

The collection includes a wrist purse called Sipa, which is inspired by a local game, the Vinta bags and clutches that evoke the sailing traditions of Mindanao, and the Puso bags, which take their shape from a staple of Cebu’s street food—rice wrapped in banana leaves.

This year, FINO Murals and commercial works for brands such as Heineken, Globe and YouTube defined the early phase of Pangilinan’s journey. Simultaneously, she was developing a more personal practice, exploring various thematic concepts and her favored medium at that time, ink on paper.

In the years that followed, Pangilinan diversified into acrylic painting to exploit the full color spectrum of the medium. For her collaboration with Fino, however, the artist returns to the palette that has defined the early phase of her career.

Filipino Art

Slender palm fronds, gumamela and sampaguita flowers emerge from the bags’ panels, the leather’s varying colors from bright red to pastel hues setting off Pangilinan’s black and white strokes. The artist’s portraits of women in traditional clothing bridge generations, with one in particular revealing the gaze of a strong, modern Filipina.

Fino x Kara is a one-off collection of bags that features the artist’s hand paintings, dated and signed, and accompanied by a certificate of authentication. The 30-piece series is an ode to heritage with Pangilinan expressing the themes of local flora and fauna alongside the Filipina’s evolved identity.

The collection is introduced by Miss Philippines Universe 2020 first runner-up Bella Ysmael, who epitomizes Fino’s ideal Filipina. The collection will be available by the end of September at Fino’s flagship store in Rockwell.

“Having Bella on board was important for us,” says Fino co-founder Rose Ann Bautista. “We wanted the right woman to represent not just the new collection, but our new direction as well.”

Fino Bags by Filipino Artist Kara

Fino x Kara will be available at Fino, 2nd floor, Rockwell, Makati City. For inquiries, call 02-8898-1456, or follow @finoleatherware.official on Facebook and Instagram for updates.

Photography by Jo Ann Bitagcol ; fashion styling by Luis Espiritu Jr.; makeup by Mau aguasin; hair styling by Baba Parma; modeled by Bella Ysmael; wardrobe by Goodluckhumans.

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